The Bulletin of the Philosophical Society of Washington contains the official records ("minutes") of the meetings of the Society. Each meeting is numbed and the minutes include a record of the topics discussed at the meeting. Many of the minutes also include abstracts of papers presented at the meeting. In addition, each Bulletin contains formal papers that were discussed at the meetings and approved for publication by the Society. Each Bulletin also includes a list of members, the standing rules of the Society, the address of the retiring president, and, often, biographical material on the members. The first ten bulletins, covering the period 1871-1887, were published by the Society in cooperation with the Smithsonian Institution. Volumes eleven through fourteen cover the period 1888-1904. Volume fifteen contains only the retiring president addresses for 1906 to 1908 and 1910, obituary addresses, and other invited addresses. The bulletins were widely distributed among members and academic libraries, including Harvard University and the University of California.
The volumes of the Bulletin cover the following periods:
Beginning in 1911, the Society published its transactions in the Journal of the Washington Academy of Sciences. The Society did publish one additional volume of the Bulletin, volume 16, in 1961. This volume includes an article on the early history of the Society, entitled "Origin and Early Days of the Philosophical Society of Washington," by Francois Frenkiel. The Society now publishes its transactions, including minutes and video recordings, on its website.
The Policy Studies Organization, through Westphalia Press, has reprinted volumes one through fifteen of the Bulletins.